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Monday, October 24, 2005 Arts & Crafts Book Review - Make Money Making Scrapbooks for Others

Make Money Making Scrapbooks for Others: The Complete guide for Creating the Career of Your Dreams by Sue DiFranco

Wondering if you could work from home, doing the craft you love? Well, if you have a talent for scrapbooking, you may be in luck. This book is a thorough and encouraging guide to every aspect of starting and succeeding as a Custom Scrapbook Artist (CSA).

The 3 main sections of the book are: (1) Starting a CSA business, 2) How to be a CSA, and, 3) Marketing your business.

There are many issues to consider when opening a home-based business. From local zoning laws, to registering a business name and a domain name, a business owner needs to make careful decisions. There is excellent info in these chapters to guide you in starting your business right. The checklist at the end of the chapter is handy for any businessperson.

Once the basics of a business are covered, the book moves to the details of being a Custom Scrapbook Artist, and really begins to excel. This author is not afraid to tackle difficult issues head-on, and she begins with the thorny topics of copyright and supplies. Avoid the pitfalls when you are reselling scrapbook supplies in albums to your clients by reading this chapter. It's good info.

Many business crafts books give little attention to teaching pricing, while it is usually a craftsperson's first and recurring question. The pricing chapter considers the issue from different perspectives, giving you tools to apply to your marketplace.

I enjoyed the detailed example of arranging a client consultation - before the meeting, confirming the meeting, what to bring, and more. Being well prepared for working with your client and their photos will help make the entire album go more smoothly.

Marketing your business is the largest section of this book. No marketing experience is necessary - it begins with the basics. The next chapters provide enough business promotion ideas to last for years. Many of these techniques are applicable to any business. Here are some of the topics - "Almost" Free Marketing, Direct Mail, Publicity, and Paid Advertising.

After you've become a bit established, your business will be ready to try the more advanced techniques. She suggests ways of marketing to niches, and adding items and services. Plenty to keep your business humming along.

This book is up-to-date - websites and pay-per-click search engine marketing are discussed. There is an extensive reference section of vendors and groups to contact. A CD containing documents to help you in your business, including a sample contract, is included.

The tone of the book is encouraging while presenting a great deal of specific practical information. It covers many issues that I had not considered, including the tricky topics of supplies, pricing, and customer contracts. Many of the ideas and tips are helpful for any home-based business.

If you are considering this career choice, I highly recommend this book. You will return to it again and again - as you begin as a CSA, and while running your business.
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